Hayes Street Wharf Bistro
This gold patterned little French hideaway on the sleepy streets of Neutral Bay is a hidden gem. In an age of share plates, it was nice to settle in for a three-course-meal of continental cuisine. I started with the delightful Chicken Liver Parfait ($16) with cherries, while my dining companion opted for Scallop and Crab Boudin Blanc ($18) – a kind of seafood sausage, served swimming in crab bisque and caviar, basically the south of France on a plate.
Taste of Shanghai
The empire has landed in World Square, giving shoppers a step up from the usual food court fare. Here you can have a bottle of wine - the T'Gallant Juliet Pinot Grigio ($36/bottle, $7.50/glass) goes down swimmingly - and gorge on dumplings all day and night.
Cockatoo Island Escape
The rugged slate of canvas that is Cockatoo Island has an energy that's unique to such an iconic piece of Sydney history. Mixing industry with creativity, the island has been home to convicts and shipbuilders alike, but these days it's a space for artists, day-trippers and urban campers.
Kansas City Shuffle
Down the business end of The Rocks you’ll find a hole in the wall café that looks like it has been plucked straight from Surry Hills. Outside you can order from the ‘Little City Window’, from stuff like P. B. & J. Toasted Sandwiches ($7.50) and House-made Doughnuts ($4.50) but it’s worth getting cosy inside on the recycled oak furniture.
La Puerta Latino Flavours
Taking someone who has just arrived back from Peru to a South American restaurant is a double-edged sword. They’re full of helpful advice, but they’re also a little, well, full of it. Luckily La Puerta’s Colombian owner Catherine Espinosa was there to step in: “We’ve taken our favourite dishes from the whole of South America and adapted them to the Australian palate.”
It doesn’t feel like a food court restaurant inside a shopping mall, in fact it doesn’t feel like you’re inside at all. Mrs Mi in Chatswood Chase brings the authentic taste of Northern China's Shanxi region into what appears to be a bustling and vibrantly coloured street-side location.
The Village Inn
After a tough week of personal attacks due to his ‘no high vis.’ dress code, Leeroy Petersen was keen to show me what his new venue should be known for – good food. He has completely gutted a ‘durty’ old Irish bar, giving it new life, natural light, wooden floors and smatterings of taxidermy on the walls.
The Dandylion Bondi
You’ve got to wonder why it’s taken so long for a fully-fledged vegetarian restaurant to open in an old DVD store in Bondi. Lamenting the lack of options and the demise of movie rentals, co-owner Chitti Lardi, a vego who grew up in the Inner West, sought the perfect spot for a 100% vegetarian (with vegan options) diner.
Food News – Bottoms Up!
It has been a year since Mr Tipply took over the City Hotel in the CBD, so a birthday bash fit for a one-year-old booze hound was thrown. With a candy bar, exotic entertainers, and a dress-up photo-booth, it was a festival for the big kid inside all of us.